Ink Review: Diamine Oxblood

Oxblood1

Subjective

Why I like Oxblood:

  • The sheer depth of bloody colour when laid on thick
  • A dark red that works for markup but also notes and is fairly easy on the eye (if you can stand the sight of blood)
  • Clean up isn’t too onerous, unlike a lot of red ink
  • Another ink that flows and lubricates well

Objective

Pens

Lamy Safari and Vista with OM, OB and 1.5mm italic nibs.
Sheaffer 300 medium.
The OM and OB were used in my Evergreen review. The Vista is relatively wet and the Sheaffer is probably the wettest pen I own.

Paper

Rhodia Bloc No. 16, 5×5 grid. Also a scrap of generic copier paper for showing bleed through.

Like any ink the wetness of a pen will affect how this ink looks; unlike Evergreen I don’t really like the product of a dry writer. The line from the OM nib is an insipid pink rust colour. It really needs a wet nib to do the ink justice.

Feathering and Bleeding

It more or less holds itself together even from a wet pen on copier paper, and doesn’t bleed through badly.

Flow and Lubrication

Superb, with lubrication just a hair less than Evergreen. Very nice.

Water Resistance

Well…

Oxblood rinse1

Oxblood rinse2

Oxblood water

Only the wettest lines have any residue. This was after about a minute of running water. Dry lines stand no chance…

Cleaning

Despite the poor water resistance the ink took a while to flush out completely, but it didn’t stain. Generally OK.

Summary

Everyone seems to love Oxblood. I think it’s a great colour but it’s not as versatile as Evergreen owing to the performance in dry nibs. For a drier pen I’d choose Red Dragon which is similarly dark but has more character when thinly laid on. But that’s just my preference.

As Evergreen is my benchmark, here’s how Oxblood compares:

  • Flow and Lubrication: as good
  • Versatility: slightly less due to unremarkable colour in dry pens
  • Clean up: slightly harder to remove, but not bad
  • Water Resistance: slightly improved, but still very poor

Verdict: a very appealing colour that will get regular use in a limited number of pens.

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